Window Wednesday — Woolbeding

Well there’s an alliteration.  That window above is today’s feature on Window Wednesday, taken in Woolbeding Church last weekend.  (by Mr B I must add)

Window Wednesday -- Woolbeding

Woolbeding church with no power

Tucked away in a little village in West Sussex is a hamlet called Woolbeding, just outside Midhurst.  We were down that way this weekend and my parents suggested we drop in as it is the church that they worship in whenever it is open (three Sundays of the month).  Luckily for us, the Sunday we visited was the church’s “off” Sunday so there was no service.   We also thought it would mean that we would only be able to look at the outside of it but we arrived along with a kindly chap on a bicycle who happened to have a set of keys.   (nb i you happen to read this I apologise for mumbling under my breath about “some bloke in a high vis jacket who has just ruined my shot”.  This shot:

Church Pathway )

The church is mentioned in the Domesday book and whilst the nave is Saxon the rest of the church is now from the 1700s.  The font though is from the 11th century.   What is really remarkable and really sets this church out as being a bit special is that there is no electricity and no running water.   Services in winter are often accompanied by candlelight.

I can just imagine how romantic that must be.  Especially for midnight mass.   Or a winter wedding.

Woolbeding Church with no electricity

We had the place to ourselves on Sunday morning and had a lovely wander around both the church and the small graveyard surrounding it.   We also had a nosey over the wall to the manor house next door.   Looked after by the National Trust,  Woolbeding Gardens are open to the public on Thursday and Fridays (strictly by appointment only), so me sticking my camera lens over the wall on a Sunday morning was very naughty.   But I couldn’t resist.  Mainly because of this:

Woolbeding Church

I have no idea on the history or background to the piece, as I say, I was looking over a wall I shouldn’t have been and not on an official tour.   I am definitely coming back though so I can apologise  learn more about this and the other folly I spotted

Statue in Woolbeding Manor garden

Woolbeding Manor

We were also alerted by the kindly chap with the keys to the fact that there were fairy foxgloves growing on the walls around the church.  A rare alpine plant that he really suggested we go and photograph.

Fairy Foxgloves

Woolbeding Fairy Foxgloves

Rare Fairy Foxgloves

Alpine Fairy Foxgloves

If you ever find yourself in Midnurst then I do recommend you take a little detour.  You don’t have to be religious to enjoy the peace and quiet offered by a deserted church.  I could have sat there for hours on Sunday.  A real oasis of calm in an otherwise bonkers crazy world if you ask me.

Woolbeding church bible

how stunning?!!

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  • Magical pictures. How did you capture so much light. Even candle lit, it never looks that bright, with the gloom adding atmosphere to the service. On the days a service is held, the church is packed, with peopl coming from all around.
    Worry not about looking over the wall; its National Trust owned, which means we all pay for it.
    Lovely story, and beautiful flowers.

  • Was he sure they were foxglove types?
    I’m no expert but they look a bit like “campions” to me.
    Super place – evensong in Winter must be fun!
    Bring your own Hottie!

  • Woolbeding Gardens are lovely – there’s more follies and even a lake. You should definitely try to go one day.